Storm recovery remains slow but steady


Edgecombe County Manager Eric Evans


Staff Writer

Saturday, October 21, 2017

TARBORO — Recovery from Hurricane Matthew is a slow-going process but progress is being made, said Edgecombe County Manager Eric Evans.

“Even though signs of progress make us hopeful, it is still extremely difficult for those families who have not been able to move back home and are waiting on other programs to come through,” Evans said.

Ninety-nine families were approved for FEMA's temporary direct housing program in the form of a FEMA trailer. Of those, nine have moved out into more permanent housing.

Of the nearly 400 families that were once staying in hotels under FEMA's Transitional Shelter Assistance program, the number is down to one family that was due to move this week into a new home built by Samaritan's Purse.

Sixty families have received rental assistance to help them move out of the hotels and FEMA trailers.

Faith-based organizations are vitally important to the recovery effort, Evans said.

“Samaritan's Purse has committed to building 20 new homes, four have been completed and turned over to flood survivors,” Wvans said. “The United Methodist Church, Mennonite Disaster Relief and Islamic Relief Worldwide are all working on home repairs.”

Two of the four apartment complexes in Princeville that were flooded are well underway in making repairs with some former tenants scheduled to move back in within the next couple of months.

“Though not enough to meet all of the needs that remain, we are set to receive a significant amount of federal funding that will help with recovery,” Evans said. “This includes Hazard Mitigation Grant Program funds and Community Development Block Grant funds for Disaster Recovery.”